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U.s. 17, Afghanistan 14, Virginia Tech 11, Us 11, Virginia 10, Blacksburg 7, Romney 5, Obama 5, Charlotte 4, Iraq 4, Colorado 4, Nikki Giovanni 3, Colin Goddard 3, Amy Goodman 3, Mr. Cho 3, Yemen 3, Washington 3, Aurora 3, New York 3, Va. 2,
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  WHUT    Democracy Now    Series/Special. Current  
   Events & News in the World  

    October 2, 2012
    6:00 - 7:00pm EDT  

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10.02.12 10.02.12 10.02.12 >> this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. we are on the road in washington, d.c.. >> the presidential debate of this election is happening miles away from columbine high school and aurora, two of the worst domestic events in our history. if there was ever a time to pose a question about current policy to our candidates for president of this country, then this debate happening on wednesday is the time. >> as president obama and mitt
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romney prepare for the debate in denver, survivors of recent shooting massacres are asking the moderator to ask the candidates about gun violence. we will speak with colin goddard, who survived the shooting at virginia tech in 2007, and to poet professor nikki g rabbani, who taught the shooter in her class. >> if you are not concerned about gun violence, what are you concerned about? >> first, the u.s. death toll an event -- afghanistan tops 2000. we talk about america's longest- running war. all that and more coming up. this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. iran's currency has hit an all- time low amidst a worsening financial crisis brought upon by u.s.-led sanctions. on monday, the iranian rial dropped 15% to its lowest point
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against the dollar, capping a three-month contest that has seen its overall value drop 57%. the price of basic foods are on the rise since a new round of sanctions took place in july. a former u.s. ambassador to the un and under secretary of state thomas pickering criticized the act. it is not legal for them to pay for it. speaking to the council of foreign relations in new york, alioth parcel la hay says it has not backed away from its mountain of nuclear weapons. >> any country, including iran, uses meweapons of mass destruction, that is the end of the eligibility, legality, what ever you name it, of that
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government. weapons of mass destruction, as we said, is against humanity. it is something that is not at all of the mall. >> the british, french, and german governments are expected to push for tightening sanctions at the end of the month. the obama administration is reportedly considering whether to begin unilateral military strikes on alleged al qaeda targets in north africa. "the washington post" reports concerns about al qaeda gains in mali, as well as weapons gained from libya. the u.s. has launched secret intelligence operations, including the use of civilian aircraft to conduct surveillance over the sahara desert. new figures show september was
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iraq's's the deadliest month in more than two years. sure when he would be detained. >> in regard to our reaction to the verdict today by enforcing the verdict, we were expecting that. we know that we are still targeted for our role in the pro-democracy movement. they expected the same, that there would be this verdict. they believe also that they are innocent and did not do any ms. doing, wrongdoing. >> that was ali al-ekry speaking hours before his arrest. york attorney general eric
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schneiderman has filed a lawsuit against jp morgan chase for alleged fraud in mortgage-backed securities issued by bear stearns. he says investors were defrauded by mortgages. he issued the securities before being acquired by jp morgan in 2008. the case is the first against a major u.s. bank to come out of the residential mortgage-backed securities working group, a white house-backed task force launched this year to probe fraud in mortgage-backed securities. american express has agreed to pay $112 million to settle allegations of abusive debt collection and late fee charges as well as deceptive marketing. the consumer for to protection bureau says american express customers were illegally charged late fees based on a percentage of their debt, while others given the impression that partial payment would result in the forgiveness of their
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remaining balance. president obama and republican challenger mitt romney are campaigning in colorado ahead of their first presidential debate wednesday night in denver. on monday, romney told supporters he looks forward to making his case. >> it will span the entire month. we will describe our respective views and i believe the people of colorado will choose a better way forward for our country. we cannot afford four more years. >> tune in on wednesday when we host a special expanded presidential debate in the evening, pausing after the questions to candidate romney and president obama, to allow equal responses from third-party candidates jill stein of the green party and rocky anderson of the justice party. we begin our broadcast 8:30 p.m.
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standard time. the republican national committee has reportedly ended its bid to register new voters ahead of the election. after a company hired to run the program was cited with election fraud. in the republican national committee has cancelled its contract with the firm which was reportedly the only vendor it had hired to register voters. despite a history of similar scandals, republicans have paid firms millions of dollars, including $1.3 million in florida. police in riot gear arrested at least 17 protesters who sat down in the middle of a road leading to a walmart warehouse in illinois on monday. in a bid to strike workers, people were arrested.
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warehouse workers went on strike more than two weeks ago amidst allegations of sexual harassment, dangerous working conditions, unpaid wages, and retaliation against organizers. managers reportedly fired several leaders and threatened others after they threatened to file petition. demonstrators rallied here in washington, d.c. monday to mark the first anniversary of the occupy movement. protesters camped out in freedom plaza after the initial occupy wall street protest sprung up in manhattan's and zucotti park. on monday, protesters blocked traffic and protested at the offices of lobbyists and corporations. scientist, activist, and former presidential candidate barry, there has died at age 95.
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doctor, there was an early advocate of environmental awareness. in a statement, the consumer advocate ralph nader said "dr. barry commoner should be considered the greatest environmental air list of the 20th-century. his great work is reflected in his many campaigns that succeeded and in raising public consciousness to the silent violence of toxic pollution." poses some of the headlines. this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. we begin today's show in afghanistan where the u.s. has waged the longest war in its history. this week, the official u.s. military death toll in afghanistan passed the 2000 mark. on monday, a suicide bomber killed 14 people, including three u.s. soldiers. witnesses say the bomber was wearing an afghan police uniform. meanwhile, the head of nato has
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revealed western forces may withdraw from afghanistan sooner than expected. in an interview with "the guardian" newspaper, anders fogh rasmussen admitted the killings of about 50 troops so far this year by afghan have damaged the relationship between the international forces and afghan police and military. in the meantime, the u.s. has all but written off working out a peace deal with the taliban. we are joined by by afghan haves to talk about this. she has written several books on afghanistan. welcome to democracy now! 2000, the number of u.s. soldiers killed in afghanistan. >> there is a question of when the actual milestone was reached. we are hearing from some media
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that it was this past weekend. "the new york times" said it was last august. cbs news said it was last june. even when the count gets there is up for grabs, but what is more important, that speaks to the fact that the counting is not the point. the 2000 u.s. soldier is no more or less important than the first for the 17th or the 129th. what is left out of these accounts are the scores of thousands of afghan civilians that have been killed in this war. since the records began to be kept, which was not until 2007, we know 12,996 civilians have been counted by the u.s. these accounts arethe first six yearst even counted, including the massive carpet bombing of afghanistan that opened themilie
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years. war in 2001. so we are faced with this massive level of casualties giving rise to the kind of anger across society that is leading to these so-called insider killings. the u.s. military has acknowledged that only 25% of those killings actually have anything to do with a "taliban infiltrator." the vast majority they say they do not know but it seems to be personal animosity, personal grudges. when is clear, these personal grudges are grudges against an illegal occupation that is widely despised to run the region. so when you see being rising number of casualties commack and as they continue to rise throughout the surge and now, the surge troops, which president obama sent in the first year of his presidency, they are now on their way out, but the number of casualties continues to rise. the consequences will be the
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same when we pull out the troops last week, as i would have preferred, or at the end of 2014. unfortunately, there will almost certainly be a violent struggle for power in afghanistan, very much like what happened after a foreign occupation ended. in that case, when the soviet union pulled out, there was a six-year civil war until the taliban eventually won the war with the support of the population because they promised to bring an end to the war. when will this mean politically? we do not know. the fact that the u.s. says they are not prepared to go for an efforts to bring the taliban into peace talks, does not bode well for the possibility of the war ending sooner rather than later. what we know is that all wars, and as you said, the longest war in u.s. history -- every war and with some kind of negotiation, some kind of discussion, agreement.
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that can be now or at the end of 2014. it will not qualitatively change the nature of that agreement or what happens on the ground. what we need to worry about is what the obama administration is saying it plans for the end of 2014 is not the withdrawal of all troops and all u.s. paid mercenaries as we saw in iraq, when the u.s. was forced out. this time around, we are hearing we originally heard about iraq. we will withdraw the combat troops, meaning we will keep in place the trainers, those are the ones being killed in the largest numbers, we will keep in place the cia, special forces, and we do not know how many thousands of troops that may mean. there are 100,000 paid contractors operating in iraq, along with 40,000 other nato troops. nothing is being said about the contractors. will they be withdrawn or will there numbers continue to ?xcellent -- escalate
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in this situation where we have this so-called green on blue attacks, after an attacks on soldiers, we may have to refer to a blue on blue attacks, suicide. a number of soldiers committing suicide is higher than those being killed by afghans for those been killed by the so called enemy. in that context, we need to look again at the reality of what this war has come to represent. it is not bringing freedom and democracy to afghanistan. it is not making america a safer. it is not something that u.s. troops serving in afghanistan are able to grapple with, and we are seeing that stark reality in the high number of suicides. >> and the difference between the major party candidates for president, obama and romney, and afghanistan? >> the difference, at this point, is rhetorical.
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president obama can his campaign process -- a promise from 2008 when he said he would withdraw from iraq and escalate in afghanistan candidate obama has not stopped talking about afghanistan this time around. candidate romney has said obama is not tough enough, but what he has called for has not been different in any substantive way. he has said that we should keep troops there, not a lot right away. president obama is not pulling out right away. >> the drone strikes a, on going in pakistan in yemen -- and yemen, at least 30,000 individuals have gone to pakistan at great personal risk to demonstrate against the spirit talk about the escalation of drone attacks under president obama. >> in many ways, this has become
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the signature war of president obama. this is the war he has given the most attention to, has escalated the most dramatically, not only in afghanistan, but also in yemen, somalia, reports of other lower-level drone strikes happening in other countries as well. the idea that this is cheap and safe -- meaning safe for u.s. pilots, as they are not in the air -- it turns out it is neither cheap are safe. manila get a new "times magazine" reports, it indicates that it actually costs more to keep an armed drone in the air, more than personal cost, and it would be acquitted itself, then an f-16. it is not safer for people on the ground, as we know huge people on the ground are being killed beyond the so-called kill list.
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the idea that a kill list is being created, apparently being approved by the president himself, that gives authority without any kind of judicial oversight to the idea that some people of any citizenship, including u.s. citizenship, can be placed on a kill or capture list and subject to the old met punishment without any kind of oversight by any outside agency. >> phyllis bennis, thank you for being with us. fellow at the institute for policy studies. when we come back, we just returned this morning from virginia tech. in 2007, the scene of the shooting massacre that killed 32 people. what about gun violence as the presidential candidates debate domestic policy on wednesday night? stay with us.
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>> this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. we are on the road it on a 100-
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city tour. on the eve of the first presidential debate, president obama and romney are being heard to address -- urged to address the problem of gun violence. wednesday's debate takes place 10 miles away from the columbine shooting and 15 miles away from the movie theater where 15 people were killed in july. a new bipartisan ad created by survivors of recent massacres is set to air nationally. the aid is called "demand a plan" and features a man who survived the shooting. >> i was shot in the face and neck, but i was lucky. in the next four years, 40,000 americans will not be so lucky, because they will be murdered with guns. enough to fill 200 theaters. when you watch the presidential debates, ask yourself, who has a plan to stun gun violence? let's demand a plan.
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>> early this morning, i came back from blacksburg, va., from virginia tech, and spoke with a survivor from another massacre. his name is colin goddard. he was shot four times during the 2007 virginia tech massacre that left 32 people dead. he now works for the brady campaign to prevent gun violence. he was later featured in a documentary called "living for 32." as we walked through the virginia tech campus, i began asking colin, what happened on that day of the massacre? >> we are right behind all where the shooting happened. this is where i used to walk to class from parking my car every day. it has been awhile since i have been here but it looks the same.
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>> what class were you taking? >> intermediate french. i have class here monday, wednesday, friday. we parked off campus over there, debated on skipping actually, but instead, we took this walk and went through the door here. we are here in the middle of norris hall, the hallway that resembled a hallway back in 2007. you can see the same kind of white walls, white tile floor. the hall where the shooting happened is now much different, wood paneled floors, a much nicer look to it, in my opinion. it really changed the look of the whole place. when i come back here now, and does not remind me exactly about what happened, but i still remember this hallway, but it looks much different now.
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i know where i am, you know? actually, they put the numbers back on the rooms, which are not the same numbers in each room of the shooting, but they are close. my room 211 was probably around here. i was told there would never be numbers associated with these rooms, so i was shocked to learn when they put the numbers back on. >> tell us what happened. time did you get to school? >> probably around 9:00, got into class, probably around 9:10. the teacher rolling her eyes as usual, collin coming in late. we were working on our french birds. and another student came in late, rachel, the best student in our class. it was shocking that she came
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late. we all looked at her and said, why did you even come today? class is almost over. she turned around and faced us and said, there was a shooting in my dormitory this morning and they would not let us leave. the had the whole place on lockdown. i told them i had class to go to but they would not let me go. then they let me go and i came here. that is when we all looked at each other and said, there was a shooting on campus? why haven't we heard about this? she said it happened hours before and just 30 minutes ago i was off campus. we thought, ok, they let rachel go, things must be under control. i did not think much else of it. probably about five minutes after rachel came in, things were normal, we heard this loud bang, bang, bang. this was coming from down the
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hall, behind closed doors. we thought it was coming from outside. they were working on the building that semester, so we try to get to more contruction noise. seconds later, we heard a much latter bang, bang, bang. you could tell that this was something in the hallway, not outside. the moment we heard those second banks, the teachers expression dropped, you could tell that she was very concerned with what that was. i still done that know what that was. i was in shock, disbelief, was that a gun? immediately, she went to the doorway to see what was making all the noise. as soon as she opened the door, she slammed down and she told us to get under the desk. she asked one of us to call 911. for the first time in my life -- i do not know how or why, but i pulled on my phone and dialed 91. i heard the woman on the
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dispatch and i said, i think there is someone shooting here in norris hall. i did not know exactly what is going on. blacksburg, virginia. she realized that my phone had contacted nextel emergency in ohio. when she's realized my location, she transferred me to the police. i told them what was going on. at that moment, we had bullets come through our classroom door. at that point, everybody just jumped to the ground. there was only one door to our room. i remember looking at the windows, thinking of going to the windows across the room, but in retrospect, i probably would not be here if i did that. i'd jump under the desk next to me, try to cover myself. i was in total shock. i was just conjugating french verbs and now somebody was
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shooting at me. it came full circle. i really understood the situation once i heard, felt one of those gunshots above my knee. i felt like someone had kicked me with all their might, and then that sensation faded into a stinging, burning sensation, which faded into a warm quickness that kind of faded into numbness. i remained no. pretty much head to toe for that nine and a half minutes. probably a long as nine and a half minutes of my life. at the end of it all, there were 17 people in my classroom including my teacher. i was one of seven people left alive. the gunshots that we heard were other classroom down all and that he had visited. these are all things that i learned after the fact that the police give me a walk through
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one month later and told me many things. i could remember being other or conscious, but i could not remember the entire ordeal. i was able to piece a lot of it together with their information. but one that will be under this room, they made me in the hallway for a while. the girl i had griffin to class, she was with me, she looked up she was about to fall asleep. i can try to talk to her to keep her awake. i knew that i would be ok when the police were there. i remember looking at the swat team members pies, and and looked like, you know, full moons there were so big. they were so on edge, so alert. they asked me if i could get up and leave. i said there is no way. i did not know i had a broken leg. one of the bullets had broken my leg. i had received four shots in
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total. above my knee, in both of my hips, and then threw my shoulder. this is the only one ever exited. i still have three bullets in small pieces all over my hips and mknee. once they realized i could not get up, they picked me up and walking down hallway and out the front door. they laid me on the grass outside and cut off my clothes, tried to figure out where i was bleeding from come stop the bleeding, and called an ambulance and put me in an ambulance with another student who had been shot. i the time we were on the way to the hospital, the closest hospital was already full with student and faculty. so we have to go to the hospital 30 minute down the road. >> how many students and teachers were in your class? >> of 16 students and my teacher
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made 17. my teacher was killed, probably one of the first in the class. nine other students were killed. my french class was the worst ratio of students shot and injured and killed. i do not know why. you know, we did nothing different from others. the seven that survive for all located in the same back right corner of the classroom. i just think there must have been a lot of people and the bags and desks in the way for him to not methodically walks around us as he did in other parts of classrooms, as i learned that he did. i never heard him say a word, never heard anyone talk. >> did you see him clearly? >> when i dove to the floor the
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first time, i look towards the front of the classroom once and saw someone with military boots, khaki pants, a lecture, and with two holsters over both shoulders. at that point, i looked away. i never saw the person, no. the police asked me to help identify. i could not tell them. i said i did not know. i realize that always looking at the person at the time, and that was enough. after nine and a half minutes, after the police entered the building, you could tell that they were moving closer, you could hear the moving above us. the bags and desks in thea girl nexy retrieved the phone i call the police with. i threw it out of my hand, tried to act natural. she remained on line with the police the whole time and told them, he is here, room 211.
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moments before they came in, he shot himself in the head in front of the classroom. i did not know about that until the police entered the room. first thing they said was, shooter down. that is when i realize that it was over and i would be ok. looking at this now, it is different. now this is the center for peace studies and violence prevention. i do not think you could turn something so bad into something so good. that is what i have tried to do with my life, what i'm trying to do with the brady campaign, take a negative experience and turn a positive so that what happened here does not happen somewhere else?
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. >> where is the center for peace studies. >> the global technology center is over there, where the old international conference calls. they have some streaming tvs. the actual piece -- peace center offices is over there. the director of the center was actually the husband of my french teacher. he started this whole center. he does a wonderful things. or the man to come back to the same place where his wife worked every day and was killed, to find some good in it, it is powerful. my room, 211. they do not go up that high. they have named some of the classrooms after teachers who were killed. >> we are walking past the center for peace studies and but prevention. >> it was almost not to be pure
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they were almost going to destroy the building and put up a permanent landmark in its place. i think it was a good idea to put the building here. the face of our school had not changed. this building is still here. now it is something better. i also heard there are a lot of side to quit -- scientific equipment in the base that was built here which cannot be dissembled or replaced. all that together made them decide to keep it as it is. but to renovate it, not to put it back to classroom use, but to turn it into a center for peace studies, i did not know what you could do better than that. >> since that time, you have learned a lot more about the shooter and how he came to be in this hallway, killing 32 altogether that day. >> her after the shooting, i was
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upset, angry with him, why did he do something like this? learning more about his past, i learned that he had been ridiculed and tormented brought his entire time in grade school, high school. ultimately, could not connect with society and had to go out and show society how much it hurt him. he had morningside that the school was aware of. he had been arrested for stalking girls on campus a month before, was sent to a mental health facility where he was adjudicated to be a danger to himself. with that adjudication under federal law, it prohibits you from buying a gun, but in virginia 2007, those records are only sent to a background check if you are sent for inpatient therapy. cho was sent to outpatient therapy, so that connection with never made.
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instead of signing up for therapy, he went on the internet and bought some guns and ammunition and walked into this building a couple months after that and killed 32 people and himself. >> professor geobotany -- giovanni a few years before that threaten to leave if something was not done. >> to raise the flag of his peers, other people that live on the campus, students, why was he never dealt with appropriately, why was he not given help you so badly asking for? hindsight is 2020 in retrospect, but if you learn something, you have to change. you cannot let this same situation happened somewhere else. >> now, aurora massacre victims are coming to meet with you? >> yes, and it has happened
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again. obviously, a young person that should never have had guns in his hands in the first place. we will learn more about this particular person and what the school knew about him in this shooting, and probably will find people that said, yes, there were warning signs, he should never have had that gun. unfortunately, it takes a horrible incidences in this country to get things changed. >> you are leading a campaign for president obama and romney to be asked in the presidential debate -- well, tell us what you're asking for. >> the first presidential debate in this election is happening miles from columbine and aurora, two of the worst shootings in our country's history. this is a debate about domestic policy. if there was ever a time to pose questions about gun policy to candidates for president of this country, then this debate
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happening on wednesday is the time to do it. we cannot afford to have a question to ask about this where we will get platitudes. we need a specific question asked about specific policies and specific ideas that both candidates have and how they will stop another 40,000 americans who will be merged with firearms during their next four years in office. this is not a public health issue of most concern -- if this is not a public health issue of most concern to our candidates, and not have my vote. >> colin goddard now works for the brady campaign to prevent gun violence. up next, a professor nikki d avandia -- nikki giovanni. she taught the shooter.
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>> this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. we are in a 100-city tour. we just returned from plattsburgh, va., from virginia tech, where we continue our topic on gun violence. the day after the 2007 virginia tech massacre, the community held a ceremony in memory of the victims. among those who spoke was a famous poet and virginia tech professor nikki giovanni. >> we are virginia tech. we are said today. and we will be said for quite awhile. we are not moving on. we are embracing our morning. we are virginia tech. we are strong enough to stand tall perilously. we are brave enough to bend a cry and said enough to know we must laugh again. we are virginia tech. we do not understand this tragedy. we know we did nothing to
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deserve it. the needed as a chat in africa dying of aids. needed to the invisible children avoiding capture by a rogue army. the and the bbb element watching is committed to be devastated for ivory. meehan does the mexican job looking for fresh water. the a does the avalanche and child murdered in his own crib being run over by a boiler because the land was destabilized. no one deserves a tragedy. we are virginia tech. the hopi nation embraces us. to those that offer their hearts and minds, we are strong and brave and innocent and unafraid. we are better than we think and not quite what we want to be. we are alive to the imagination and the possibility. we will continue to invent the future through our blood and tears, through all the sadness. we are the hokies. we will prevail, we will
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prevail, we will prevail. we are virginia tech. >> i sat down with nikki giovanni at her offices at the genentech where she is a distinguished university professor. i asked her about the shooter seung-hui cho whom she taught in a coach class. she rarely talks about him. >> you taught him. you wanted him out of your class. >> he had to leave, i did not want him to leave. what ever it was, i was not tied to judge him, i am just a writing teacher. >> and a social worker. >> well, i did not graduate. mr. cho, what ever it was, it truly was the damp blanket on the fire. something was wrong. i am not here to tutor, i am here to teach.
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after a certain point, you have to say, i'm not everyone's cup of tea. there are some students who would not in join me. i understand that. there are many students and get a lot of good things from me. it is subject to interpretation. say what you have to say in front of the class and at least everyone knows what you have had to say. after about the fourth class day, i said, mr. cho, i think this is not working. every day, you come in with a hat pulled over. please take your hat off. then he would have dark glasses on. this had to stop because this was a struggle. i finally said, this relationship is not working.
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i am not teaching you and i am not teaching the class because i am expanding a lot of energy on you. there is not much we can do here. i would thank you to find a class that you would prefer to be and. i will speak to whomever. we will get you all settled. he said, i do not want to leave. i said, mr. cho, this is not call may, column b. i am saying you have to leave my class. can i help the goes and where else? he said, i do not have to do anything. i said, let me try this one more time. either you or i will not be in class next thursday. one of us will be gone. if i have to keep you in class, then i will resign, and that will solve that. if virginia tech has to make a choice between you and me, i
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daresay i think they will keep me, but we will have to see. and i meant it. hi went to my department head and i had been dealing with the fact that there was just something wrong here, but mostly it would disrupting my class. i have had students who had difficulties. i have taught a student that had threats. i have taught alcoholics. i have taught ex-soldiers. this was very different and why was not going to subject myself. i said that to her. this is the way it is. either you get him out of my class or thursday morning he will have my resignation. i came here with a job and i will leave with one. she said, well, would you mind if i tutored him? i said, i really do not. this is my bottom line.
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he has to go. i did not see him but one of the time -- other time, i think in 2005. i did not seem but one other time between then and the shooting. i know that he was not looking for me, because everyone knows that i'm not even on campus on monday. whatever it was, he had it planned. i am not a big fan of mental breakdown. whether it is aurora, colorado, the man that shot for president of gifford, they plan, plan, plan, but they are mentally incapable. but they can buy a gun, bullets, and they're very well capable. guns are not one of our good ideas. i read the constitution. i did not read that any fool
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that wants a gun should have won. what did i miss? >> where were you at the time that happened? >> i was coming back from san francisco. i had been at a meeting. i had made my presentation to the principle, a high school conference, and i was to have dinner with a group that evening so that we continue. something said, you need to go home. i am a poet. i have shared this before. something said, you need to go home. i said, if i leave downtown san francisco now, i can be at sfo by 9:00. if i do that, i can be on the 10:50 redeye. that is what i wish to report. i told the principal, i'm sorry, but i have a strong feeling i
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need to go. i was never thinking i was coming into a buzz saw. all i flew all night into charlotte. i went down in charlotte. i can go to sleep easily. god has given me a great gift. i can sleep anytime. we got into charlotte and i woke up. we got into charlotte. it was 6:15 in the morning. we should have been here around 9:00, but the winter was that. so i just went back to sleep for the announcement. the next one was canceled because of the wind. but the airport does not that you have any information.
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we had no idea what was going on. those coming into roanoke had no idea what was going on, absolutely none. they finally said, we think we can make it. we are in the valley, so if there is anything around that is a problem -- we are going to go now. that meant that they would blow the plane and there would be gone. you come in on crosswinds. the kids live on their phones now. a girl said, my goodness. i was sitting in 13. she was about in a 11. she said, oh my god, there has been a shooting at virginia tech. 12 people. no, 21 people. then the whole plane is thinking, what? it is probably one or two you're
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looking at. i weigh about 140 pounds. as i came out of the plane, the wind was so strong, one of the guys came and got me and hugged me. it would not blow me away, but it would be pretty tough. he brought me in and we walked upstairs. of course now we have got a real news going, because it is coming in real time. at that point it was 21, then 25. bus whichi'd take a cost $1 to go to tech. and i would get a ride home because i did not have my car. when we saw that it was 25 and rising, i ran down to hertz and got one of the last cars. it was a piece of junk. i was driving home try to find news. i do not know when you have done
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-- and i do not what the term is. it felt like i was in a war zone. it is a strange feeling when you are in a war zone. i turn the radio on and it was a regular car. regular a am radio. i thought i would get npr but i could not find that. i kept turning and i finally station.n radford's i was alone in a car try to figure on what was happening. i was finally able to get a rock station in virginia. he had someone in norris. the person was reeling
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information to him, where the shootings occurred. at that point, there were no shootings. we know that the shooting of her over, but we did not know it then. so we are getting that report from norris. so you felt like you were in the third world, that there had been a coup. at that time wdbj shot past me. they must have been doing 120 miles per hour. wdbj, the hometown channel 10 station. you see them around. they had to be doing 120. so then i knew that this is serious. i do not live in blacksburg. i live in christiansburg. when you come on the expressway,
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they blocked the expressway into blacksburg. you could then get into blacksburg. -- not get into blacksburg. i have three lines coming into my house. i do not know how people got my mobile, but all the sudden, i went home, i turned on the television, and all of my line #live up. a friend of mine from cincinnati called. are you all right? i said, i am all right, and i think i know who did this. i could not think of anyone but mr. choate. i was talking later in the afternoon and they said, you should not say things like that. i said, maybe i should not, but i was right. was mr. cho. >> and it was you that gave the rousing statement at the rally. >> i got a call from the secretary. i love for some much.
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sandy smith. she called up and said -- i still that could get into blacksburg. she said we want you to wrap up the convocation tomorrow. it is a sad time. it is devastating. i knew that i was upset because i lost friends. i am pretty good on my feet, but i thought, i do not want to take a chance because it is going to be said. i sat down on my computer and thought, we need a definition. we are virginia tech. i just got lucky. it worked. i was never, but i did not have much time to work on it. i could not fix it. you have to go with it. i think it did its job. i am glad that we did.
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it is still sad. >> what do you think needs to be done about gun violence? >> guns are in bad idea. i think guns and automobiles are probably the two things that we need to eliminate. they have outlived their usefulness. i can see the point of guns when you are shooting peter rabbit, bringing him home and beating him, shooting than the because your family is hungry, but there is no sport to hunting. tennis is a sport. the person on the other side has the ability to hit the ball back. even football, which is violent -- but i like football. 11 guys on the 11 guys. i am not even sure golf is a sport, because you cannot play
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anybody. they get mad when i say that. i know hunting is not a sport. >> we are flying to colorado after this. a number of professors at the university of colorado boulder are now scared because students are able to carry concealed weapons on campus. what do you say to them? >> we have the same thing on the attack. i said, when this happens -- this is what we're would do if virginia passes a law that students can carry guns. we are going to drop our clothes outside the door and we are going to come in in the underwear that is formfitting. i will and you will, and we will have classed as close to make it as we can because i'm not going to try to teach someone if i do not know what is in his pocket. why should you all have to be bothered with me not knowing if i am carrying a grenade? we are all going to drop our clothes and we will all know
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that we are naked and vulnerable and we will be fine. then what are you supposed to say? someone does not like your interpretation? they are going to shoot you? you are new yorkers. i was living in new york and we had the gas wars. every now and then, somebody would jump in front of someone else in mind. we have people that killed people. we have had people in new york, chicago, los angeles -- these are what i know of -- who wish to people over parking spots. what kind of sense to have to let everyone have a gun? i am not against the old testament, but i get so tired of it -- and i for an eye. somebody said much better than i did appear that leaves everyone line. the time for guns have passed. cars and guns, the two things
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you do not need. >> do you have a message for president obama or mitt romney? >> neither one of them is standing up for something and that is disgusting. if you are not concerned about gun violence, what are you concerned about? >> niki giovanni, distinguished professor at virginia tech. that does it for our broadcast. tune in on wednesday for extended coverage of the presidential debate. we will air the debate and's fet questions to discuss the question with two individuals left out of the debate, and jill stein and rocky anderson. stein and rocky anderson. democracynow.org
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